Since the start of 2015, there have been over 6 million conversations related to Electronic Dance Music (EDM) in the U.S., including 3 million on Twitter, 1.5 million on Instagram, and 500,000 on Facebook via public profiles, according to music marketing agency My Love Affair and social media tracker Linkfluence.
In comparison, only hip-hop has generated more social media attention at 11 million conversations, while pop music has received 2 million social media mentions, rock music at 1 million, heavy metal 700,000 and indie music 500,000.
As for what these fans are talking about, Nike and Corona (AB InBev) led brand discussions, with each receiving 15,000 mentions in discussions relating to EDM.
Corona courts these fans through sponsorship deals while Nike's clothing and shoes are popular attire for festival-goers due to their neon and bright colors. Other top brands associated with EDM are Samsung with 14,000 posts, Coca-Cola's energy drink Burn with 10,000 and Adidas with 7,000 mentions.
EDM-related conversations mainly revolve around sharing a live experience during parties or festivals. For instance, one Twitter user typically makes an average of 10 tweets about EDM at one time, presumably during a festival.
"Today, brands have understood the impact of this movement and of the ecosystem that surrounds it," says Raphael Aflalo, CEO, My Love Affair. "Organizers of EDM parties or festivals have started to develop 'experiential marketing' where events are seen as real spectacles. Major brands are partnering with leading EDM artists who endorse the brands’ products and make them more visible."
However, EDM is not one universal community. This genre is actually made up of what My Love Affairs considers sub-tribes each led by popular DJs. To that end, David Guetta is the most popular with a community of 59 Million Facebook fans and 17 million followers on Twitter, followed by Skrillex with 19 million Facebook fans and 4 million followers on Twitter.
Avicii has 18 million Facebook fans and 1.5 million Twitter followers, while Taylor Swift's reported new boyfriend Calvin Harris has 11 Million Facebook fans and 5 million on Twitter and finally Hardwell at 7 million Facebook fans and 2 million on Twitter.
Meanwhile, Skrillex is the top most discussed DJ with 9 million mentions, followed by Hardwell and Calvin Harris, each at 5 million, Avicii at 3.5 million and David Guetta at 3 million.
While these DJ's initial followings grew organically, they are now leveraging their visibility through mainstream brand associations. For instance, Calvin Harris appears in the “Underwear” campaign for Emporio Armani, David Guetta reps G.H. Mumm Champagne and Tag Heuer, and Avicii supports Ralph Lauren and Alcatel OneTouch.
"They allow the gathering of a dynamic and energetic community brought together around the music, around EDM,” says Aflalo.
EDM fans on social media are diverse. Two in 10 (20%) social media conversations about EDM come from groups of Millennials and young adults, 13% from the community of “lifestyle” fans, 8% from fans of new technologies, and 6% of such conversations are led by women.